Florida – is not exactly considered the favorite destination of hikers and hikers. One probably rather thinks of Disneyland, the Florida Keys, the Everglades, Cape Canaveral or just the beaches. The more astonishing it is that Florida has to offer a “Long distance hiking trail” of almost 2100 km length, which leads from north-western Florida – the “Panhandel” – through central Florida almost to the Everglades – the Florida Trail.
In the early 60’s, when Jim Kern came back to Miami from hiking the Appalachian Trail, he decided to create a long distance trail in Florida. Together with friends he founded the Florida Trail Association. The goal of the organization was to create a route between Big Cypress National Preserve and Highlands Hammock State Park.
At that time, there were practically no hiking trails in Florida. These had to be built first laboriously. But by 1966, the first hundred miles could be marked. Today, more than 40 years later, hikers can walk on almost 2100 km of trails marked with orange markers throughout Florida.
The English site of the Florida Trail Association (www.floridatrail.org) is quite well done and contains a lot of detailed information. Unfortunately, there are hardly any information or experience reports in German language to the Florida Trail.
Who has already hiked the Florida Trail – completely or partly –
please contact me for exchange of experiences!
I will be in Florida myself in March 2008 for a few days and try to get at least a small insight of the trail. I will report about it later…
In the following a video of the American Mike DeWitt who has hiked the complete trail in one piece and tells a little bit about the trail in English and shows pictures.